Last month Patrón Tequila launched Patrón 60 Hands – Pay It Forward, a grant to give back to grassroots and community craftspeople to help them continue their craft, and Australian bartender and artist Matthew Bax is in the running.

Bax is the founder of Grau Projekt, which intersects the arts and hospitality with artist-curated drinks, and he is also known for his other ventures, including Bar Americano, and the internationally renowned former Melbourne bar, Der Raum.

Bax knows all too well how devastating the events of 2020 have been to the arts and hospitality industries, with his bar being closed since March, and three of his art shows, including a first LA show, being cancelled.

He’s now in the running for one of the Patrón grants, which are open to creators and innovators in the design, fashion and hospitality industries. Patrón 60 Hands is about honouring and nurturing talented craftspeople, and helping them hone their abilities. To apply for the grant, makers were asked to submit a short video explaining what craftsmanship means to them, and how the $25,000 grant would help them support their craft.

Stephanie Sarantakos, Patrón Tequila Australia’s Brand Manager said: “The craftsmanship that goes into the making of a handmade item is incredible.

“Patrón itself is a refined handcrafted spirit, so there is a great synergy between the craftsmanship of our tequila and these makers, and we want to nurture these talented craftspeople through Patrón 60 Hands. We’re looking forward to seeing entries from far and wide across Australia.”

With Patrón translating to ‘boss’, the six judges helping to recognise these makers are bosses in their own fields and will offer invaluable insight into each of their crafts and industries.

These judges consist of design and architecture connoisseur and comedian Tim Ross, Camilla Freeman-Topper and Marc Freeman, founders of renowned Australian fashion brand CAMILLA AND MARC, Phil Wood, Pt. Leo Estate’s celebrated Culinary Director, who is known for his award-winning cuisine and use of local produce, architects Ingrid Richards and Adrian Spence of award-winning Brisbane firm Richards & Spence and the architects behind The Calile Hotel, founder and creative director of White Story, Fiona Myer, industrial designer and founder of international surfboard brand Haydenshapes, Hayden Cox, and ceramicist and Artichoke magazine editor Cassie Hansen.

“When we have been so often separated from each other this year, finding time to reward and encourage the craftspeople who nurture the soul with the skill of their hands has never been more important,” said Phil Wood, Pt. Leo Estate’s Culinary Director, about the Patrón 60 Hands – Pay It Forward campaign.

The grant recipients will be announced on 2 December.





Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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